TUNIS, Tunisia Apr 29 – The dream of an all Kenyan semi final at the 2016 African Women Volleyball Club championships was quashed after Kenya Prisons lost out 3-1 to Tunisia’s Carthage in a tight encounter in Tunis on Thursday night.
Had they won, Prisons would have booked a semi-final berth against Kenya Pipeline who had earlier won 3-1 against another Tunisian opponent Carthage.
Prisons coach David Lung’aho who was seeking a sixth title for the Kenyan girls however left head high, even as he prepares his side for a 5/6 play-off before the semis on Friday night.
Lung’aho’s girls had a bad start to the match, losing 25-19 in the first set. They upped their game in the second set but lost narrowly 25-22. In the crucial third set Prisons increased the pressure and despite the rousing home pressure went on to win 27-25.
However, they let their feet off the gas pedal in the fourth set with Carthage coming back with a 25-18 win to put the game to bed.
“The team played their hearts out against a well oiled Carthage. We really wanted to win this match but we lacked the killer instinct in the second and fourth sets. The young players proved a point again by fighting hard against such an experienced side. We accept defeat and promise to bounce back because the players are growing everyday” Lung’aho told Capital Sport.
Record champions Kenya Pipeline made easy work of another Tunisian side Sfaxien despite a shocker in the third set to book a semi final date against Carthage.
Japheth Munala’s side won the opening two sets easily 25-15 and 25-14 before a set-back in the third set where they slumped to a 25-15 defeat. However, Munala made some intense team talk going into the fourth set and they managed to recover with a 25-17 win.
“It was a tough match but we thank God we managed to win. We now expect an even tougher assignment against Carthage but we are ready to fight,” Pipeline centre Trizah Atuka told Capital Sport.
In the other semi-final, Rwanda’s Revenue Authority who are regarded as the tournament’s dark horses will meet with defending champions Al Ahly after beating another Egyptian side El Shams 3-1 (25-21, 10-25, 29-27, 25-18) to become the first ever Rwandan team to qualify to the semi-final.